Photography by: Tinywater Photography
About the Venue
Did you know Cornerstone Gardens in Sonoma was the first gallery-style garden installation in the United States? Did you also know this incredible garden, which was fashioned after the famed Garden Festival at Chaumont-sur-Loire in France, was recently included in 1001 Gardens to See Before you Die by Rae Spencer-Jones & Elizabeth Scholtz and it has made Sunset Magazine's Top 10 list for Western Gardens? Well, if flying the entire wedding party to France is out of the question for your wedding celebration, we recommend checking out the Cornerstone Gardens as a fun and provocative alternative.
We recommend using as much of the property as possible. Stretch out your party by encouraging your guests to explore every nook and cranny. Do you need an activity during appetizers and cocktails while the happy couple takes a few photos? Consider a scavenger hunt. The garden consists of over nine acres of amazing landscape installations, vintage salvage yard, and modern and retro themed boutiques and art galleries. In other words, endless opportunities for your guests to fall in love with this amazing venue.
Ask the Expert
As you plan your ceremony, consider escorting your guests to the pond. The lush green lawn bordered by a chic rectangular pond complete with lily pads makes quite a statement. What I love about this area is that you can choose your backdrop to be either the reflective pond or acres of mature grapevines. The background is naturally elegant and provides all the inspiration you need. This is a spot where keeping things simple is required.
If you really want to make the ceremony stand out, we recommend using unique chairs versus overdoing it with floral and other elements. Classic Party Rentals has some great options: the Tuscany Chair, Wrought Iron Cafe Chair, Garden Chair, French Slotted Chair, or even benches - all can help set the tone. Plus they add all the decor you need for the elegantly understated ceremony area.